Applied Science - Science and Math (6B)

  • Exploring design.
  • Comparing science and art.
  • art 
  • design
  • science

Students scientifically design an art project.


Both an artist and a scientist have to think about their goal when they start a project.  An artist has a vision of the end product.  A scientist also needs a goal for a research project.  Although the product of both an artist and a scientist are different, the thought processes are very similar.  The great artists of the world made sketch after sketch before they actually produced their art.  Many students are not aware that even people with talent have to work to make that talent a reality.  No matter how talented a person is, developing a masterpiece takes thought and conviction.

A scientist also has to continue to work on a breakthrough.  It takes time and patience for most discoveries to happen.

Design is a word used to mean composition, style or decoration.  Composition is the framework of relationship in a thing, considered analytically in isolation from the parts and from the whole.  Both artist and scientist have to consider both design and composition if their project can fit into an overall scheme.


  1. In this lab, students will design art before they create it.  On the lab sheet they will have to think about how many colors they want, how many pieces they will require, and generally what the design will look like.  As students progress from the design created on paper to the actual perler beads, they may decide it is not what they wanted.  In experiments, as in design, it is acceptable to change the course of the project if the original design was flawed.
  2. You can give a limit on the number of Perler Beads you provide the students.  It might consist of 20 red, 20 blue, 20 yellow, and 20 green. First you have the student design what the pattern may look like or they can experiment with the beads on the templates.  In the kit there are 3 templates, a hexagon, square, and circle.  You may want students to see if the same number of beads can create the same pattern on the different shapes.  (Similar, but not exactly.)
  3. Perler beads are placed one by one on a pegboard.  When the design is complete, heat-seal paper is placed over the design and it is ironed by an adult helper.  The beads fuse together quickly on what will become the backside of the design.  When it has cooled completely, the design is removed from the pegboard.  The pegboard is reusable, and the iron paper can be used many times before it must be discarded.  If you want to save the perler beads, do not fuse the beads.  It depends on budget if you want to use this as a consumable or not.  Use the design and idea book for students to get ideas.  Stress that great ideas and designs usually built up from a previous knowledge.  Looking for ideas is not cheating.
  4. You may want to give the design phase as a homework assignment.  Creativity also needs time . Science and art are related. 

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